The American Society for Aesthetics Board of Trustees has approved support for the Workshop on Art, Perception, and History, at the University of Toronto, May 5-6, 2017. The Workshop is organized by Sonia Sedivy, Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of Toronto.
ASA has awarded up to $4,600 in support, plus an additional $1000 to support attendance at the Workshop by ASA student members. Support is also being provided by several units of the University of Toronto. The workshop is free and open to the public.
Speakers at the workshop will include:
From Art History
- Whitney Davis, University of California, Berkeley, Art History
- Jason Gaiger, University of Oxford, The Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art
- Amy Powell, University of California, Irvine, Art History
- Paul G. Smith, University of Warwick, History of Art
From Philosophy of Art or Perception
- Diarmuid Costello, philosophy, University of Warwick
- Robert Hopkins, New York University, Philosophy
- Dominic McIver Lopes, The University of British Columbia, Philosophy
- Bence Nanay, University of Antwerp, Centre for Philosophical Psychology
- Belinda Piercy, University of Toronto, Philosophy, Ph.D. 2016.
- Sonia Sedivy, University of Toronto, Philosophy
- Kendall L. Walton, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Philosophy
The workshop will focus on the way that works of art and visual culture are poised at the intersection of history and perception. Such works are imbued with their historical situation and with historical relationship to other works. Yet for the most part, it is through their perceptible properties that they have their impact.
To explore this nexus, the workshop aims to bring together art historians with two sub-disciplines from philosophy – philosophy of perception as well as aesthetics. While art historians and philosophers of art have collaborated to some extent, bringing philosophers of perception explicitly into the mix is a recent development. The objective of the workshop is to initiate fully three-way collaborative research between art historians, philosophers of art and aesthetics, and philosophers of perception.
The main goal of the workshop is to create bridges between these three fields of study to produce integrated, multi-dimensional research into works of art and visual culture. A small intensive workshop is ideal for discussing methodological differences, for sharing knowledge and for facilitating shared language.
The workshop will address a number of questions of broad interest to which art historians and philosophers of art and perception have turned their attention. For example:
1. How are historical developments made perceptibly manifest in artworks and non-art pictures more broadly, including photographs?
2. What is aesthetic value? How can such value be both historically contingent and perceptual in nature?
3. How do pictures work? How do diverse kinds of pictorial vehicles make contents available?
4. What is distinctive about photographs?
5. What makes properties aesthetic and when is perceptual experience aesthetic?